I mentioned it last week in my “Travel Must-Haves” list, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise, but I hardly ever travel without a scarf. After about a decade of independent travel, I’ve come to know what to look for in a the perfect travel scarf.
While you might not get a single scarf that covers every single travel situation you might find yourself in, there are some great questions to ask yourself to find the most versatile one.
Related: Looking for a travel jacket to make travel even more convenient? Here are some of the best and most handy travel jackets with hidden pockets.
Edit: This post was updated in November 2016.
Do you want to wear a purse?
No? Me neither. That’s why I love scarf concepts like the SHOLDIT Infinity Clutch Wrap Scarf.
Besides being stylish in colors and patterns, and made from a Valerie-travel-stain resistant material, it’s super functional. The built-in zippered pocket is perfect for your passport, phone, credit and ID cards, or lip gloss… or all of the above!
This scarf can also be worn as a head wrap, shawl, or many other ways, making it handy for moments where you didn’t pack or put on enough layers.
The strength really comes from that zippered pocket since you can also tuck the scarf into its own pocket and pack it away in a corner of your bag without it consuming too much space.
Do you want to look damn good?
When it comes to any situation that requires a scarf and also requires that I look good, the first thing I reach for is my Pashmina scarf.
I love the rich burgundy and deep gold Pashmina that’s been in my wardrobe for years, but I’m particularly smitten with this richly golden Pashmina. It feels very Asian and Eastern inspired, and is sure to give you a boost of worldliness in the eyes of those you’re dressing up for (even if it’s just yourself in the mirror!).
The other thing that’s wonderful about Pashmina scarfs is that they are great in multiple temperatures: they’re light enough to handle a summer evening on the coast of somewhere exotic, and they’re heavy enough if you double or quadruple fold them to handle a bitter winter wind.
Does travel make you a bit uncomfortable?
Even I am uncomfortable traveling! Whether it’s a cramped middle seat on the airplane, a bit of turbulence, or a delayed plane/train/automobile – travel isn’t as glamorous as it looks on Instagram.
Times like these call for a blanket scarf: a big, fluffy, cozy scarf that can be wrapped so that it nearly envelopes your whole body. You can also use it as a blanket (whoa!), a pillow, a spread for a spontaneous picnic… you name it!
Do you have a favorite travel scarf? What do you love about it? Let me know in the comments!